LRN AM Newscall for Monday April 27

The $22.9 million makeover of the Rapides Parish Coliseum in Alexandria begins today after numerous delays. Eric Gill reports…

CUT 1 (28) “reporting”

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A bill to increase the state’s tax on cigarettes by $1.18 is expected to be debated today in the House Ways and Means Committee. Jeff Palermo has a preview…

Cut 2 (29) “reporting”

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For homeowners looking at purchasing solar panels to reduce their utility costs. Jeff Palermo reports the attorney general’s office says do your homework first…

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The $22.9 million makeover of the Rapides Parish Coliseum in Alexandria begins today after numerous delays. The project is finally getting underway after voters approved a bond issue to renovate the facility two-and-a-half years ago. Rapides Police Jury President Richard Billings says everyone’s excited these changes are finally being made…

cut 4  (10) “what we want”

He says the coliseum last held an event over a year ago. Billings says, when complete, the venue will be practically brand new with renovations happening both outside and inside the building…

Cut 5  (10)  “for entertainers”

The renovations are expected to take 20 to 22 months to complete. Billings says he can’t wait for people to visit the new facility when construction is complete. He says renovations, so to speak, won’t stop with the building itself…

Cut 6 (11)  “many, many years”

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Caddo Parish District Attorney Charles Scott will be laid to rest today after his sudden death last week in a Baton Rouge hotel while on business at the Capitol. Preliminary findings reveal the 67-year-old died of previously diagnosed heart disease. Pete Adams is the Executive Director of the Louisiana District Attorneys Association…:

CUT 7 (09)  “very intelligent”

Caddo District Court proceedings are suspended today in honor of Scott’s funeral at the Broadmoor Baptist Church. Adams says Scott was the kind of person who was kind to everyone and didn’t have a mean bone in his body..:

Cut 8  (09)  “worked very hard” 

Scott was found by two employees in his office at the Lod Cook Hotel and Conference Center at LSU after he didn’t show up for breakfast. A special election for a new Caddo DA is expected to happen in conjunction with this fall’s gubernatorial race. The first assistant is currently the acting DA. Adams says Charles was a true leader in their organization.:

Cut 9 (10)  “to the highest standards”

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The House Ways and Means Committee will consider this morning a bill that will raise the state’s cigarette tax from 36-cents per pack to $1.54 per pack, which is the national average. Stasha Rhodes, with the American Heart Association in Louisiana, says the measure has an excellent chance at passing, because of the state’s massive budget shortfall…

Cut 10 (06) “possible solution”

Rhodes says not only will an increase in the cigarette tax help the state’s budget situation now, it will result in fewer people smoking, which should result in cost savings in the future…

cut 11 (11) “15.4 million dollars”

The state is facing a one-point-six billion dollar budget shortfall. Rhodes says the cigarette tax increase under consideration today would generate 223-million dollars in new revenue for the state, which is why they think it has an excellent chance at passing…

cut 12 (11)   “7,000 lives”

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The Louisiana Attorney General’s office urges consumers to research the costs and benefits of solar panels before purchasing them. The director of the public protection division of the state’s A-G’s office, Sam Pleasant, says homeowners can be attracted by a promise of reduced energy costs from solar power systems, but sometimes there are some significant up front costs

Cut 13 (09)  “up front”

Pleasant says Attorney General Buddy Caldwell recommends that potential solar panel buyers should get at least three written proposals or price quotes and speak with people who have first-hand experience in purchasing them….

Cut 14 (10) “recoup savings”

Pleasant says they issued this alert now, because warmer weather prompts many consumers to look at ways to save money on utility bills. She says you can contact your utility provider to see if they’ll perform an energy efficiency audit of your home, which can determine if it’s even worth getting solar panels

Cut 15  (08)  “solar system”

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The Pelicans season is over after getting swept by Golden State in their four-game playoff series. Even though New Orleans didn’t win a game in the postseason, Anthony Davis showed he’s one of the top players in the league. Davis had 36 points and 11 rebounds in the series finale…

Cut 16  (17)  “next year”

Head Coacn Monty Williams believes Davis’ first experience in the playoffs will only fuel him to become a better player…

Cut 17 (10)  “next year”